Judie hopes injuries don't scare away NFL teams

KRISTIE RIEKEN AP Sports Writer Published:

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) -- Defensive back Coryell Judie finished with just 22 tackles last season after missing almost half of Texas A&M's games with a hamstring injury. That didn't stop him from hoping to impress some NFL scouts.

Judie, who was expected to be one of A&M's top defensive players in 2011, worked out for scouts on Wednesday at the school's pro day, hoping his speed and athleticism would help them look past his injury-plagued college career.

He says the adversity he faced at Texas A&M made him stronger and he's encouraged that several teams have shown interest.

Still some are leery of his injury history, which includes a broken wrist and three shoulder surgeries.

"Most teams are iffy and wonder if I'm injury-prone, but I just tell them that I've been doing good rehab and getting my shoulder and hamstring well so I feel fine," he said.

He was happy with his 40-yard dash times at last month's combine, where he ran a low time of 4.38, so he didn't run again on Wednesday. But he participated in many of the other drills and his 10-foot, 3-inch broad jump was the second best of the day.

Some have projected Judie, who also returns kicks and punts, to be a third or fourth-round draft pick. He now feels the healthiest he's been in quite some time and is looking forward to the draft.

"When the challenges came my way, I overcame them and I feel good about the position I'm in now," he said.

Judie was one of 13 Aggies who worked out. Projected first-round pick quarterback Ryan Tannehill is recovering from foot surgery and won't work out for scouts until later this month.

Wide receiver Jeff Fuller, another Aggie who dealt with injuries this season, also showed his stuff Wednesday. He planned to work out at the combine, but a stress fracture in his foot kept him out of the event.

He is healthy now and looked good performing all of the drills for scouts from almost all of the NFL's 32 teams.

He had a great season in 2010 and lead the team with 72 receptions for 1,066 yards and 12 touchdowns. Things dropped off a bit in 2011 as he dealt with a couple of nagging injuries, but he still managed 70 catches for 828 yards and six scores.

"I still see myself as one of the best receivers in the nation," he said. "It was a rough year and I battled a lot of rough injuries, but I still have confidence in my ability and feel like I'm back where I was my junior year having some time off and getting healthy."

At almost 6-foot-4 and 223-pounds, Fuller believes that his size will help set him apart from other receivers in the draft.

"Big guys like me get separation and I feel like I do a good job of doing that out of my breaks," he said. "If you're big and you have strong hands, you can have a (defensive back) on your back and still catch the ball. So I think that's attractive to teams."

Running back Cyrus Gray, who like Judie and Fuller, had trouble with injuries this season, also showcased his skills. He had 198 carries for 1,028 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2011 despite missing the last two games with a stress fracture in his shoulder.

Also projected to be a third- or fourth-round pick, Gray didn't run the 40 on Wednesday after running a 4.4 at the combine. He took part in several other drills and had some individual conversations with scouts from different teams.

He believes his experience in sharing carries with running back Christine Michael for the last two seasons will help him adjust to the NFL, where using a combination of backs is common.

"That was some of the questions they asked me about Christine and about our situations and I know it's a team sport and you need the other guy just like the other guy needs you," Gray said. "I've experienced that and I know what I have to do to be productive in a system like that."

Kicker Randy Bullock, who won the Lou Groza Award as the nation's top kicker, also worked out for the scouts. He chatted with Houston Texans' special teams coordinator Joe Marciano for a bit before he kicked for the group.